If you love music that is vulnerable and honest, you will love Rose Betts. Rose is a talented singer and songwriter hailing from the UK. She is the darling of Sofar Sounds and a regular on the London music scene. She works not only on her own music but also through stereotypes with her collaborations with film, theater, and virtual technology. If you are a fan of superhero movies, you might have heard her stunning voice on the Justice League soundtrack with ‘Song To The Siren.’
Her latest single, ‘Recovery,’ is a beautiful song that is both emotional and vulnerable. We all have gone through messy breakups and this song encompasses all of the pain we felt but has also given us hope for the future. Rose has also announced that she is working on her debut full-length album and we cannot wait for it to be released this year.
We got to chat with Rose about her musical journey, working on the Justice League soundtrack, and more! Check out our chat below.
Can you take us through your current musical journey to where you are now? How did you know this is what you wanted to do?
I started writing songs at about eleven, and when everyone at school was figuring out what university to go to, I realized that I didn’t want that route, so I moved to London and started life as a musician there! I am very lucky to have an artistic family who never intervened in this plan and supported me so much. It just felt obvious to me that songwriting and a life working in music was what was right for me, if I’d done anything else, I would have regretted it.
Your newest single, ‘Recovery,’ is a song about something you personally went through, and you mentioned it changed the way you write songs. Do you feel as though this experience changed who you are as an artist overall, and if so, how?
Yes, I do. The experience that led to writing ‘Recovery’ is not unlike something we all encounter at some point, a messy relationship and break up that is, but until ‘Recovery,’ I’d never gone so deep or been so honest in a song. I don’t do it all that often because going so close to something so painful comes at a cost, but I feel that this is an artists’ responsibility in a way, to journey into these feelings so that they can be given a shape that other people can access and experience and encounter themselves inside of. It widened my landscape as a person and as an artist, and this has informed all of my work.
What do you hope fans take away from this track?
Oh, I hope they find something of themselves in it, and also that they have compassion for that part and a bit more love towards themselves. Recovery is so hard, but it is always possible, I would love for them to feel that.
You seem to be so vulnerable and honest in your art. How do you protect yourself mentally after letting the lyrics and passion out?
What a perceptive question! Yes, it’s true. I try to be both these things. It’s strange, in a way letting the feelings out into the songs acts as a way of releasing them, putting them somewhere outside of myself where I can look at them objectively, so it does actually help to write. It’s a therapy in itself. I do have to keep an eye on the toll it takes traveling to these vulnerable places, though, make sure I’m not holding on to things too much. Letting go is nearly impossible as my past experiences are what enrich the songs so much, but I try to distance myself from things that don’t do me any good to return to.
And you got to work on the Justice League soundtrack with your cover of ‘Song To The Siren,’ the “Snyder Cut” is coveted among fans and has a cult following. What has the response from those fans been like to ‘Song To The Siren’?
Oh my lord, it’s been amazing! I have received so many messages from people telling me how moving they found that song, how it made them cry, how it changed them, how that they’re using it for their first dance at their wedding… it’s so humbling to know that this song has been taken into so many people’s lives. The fans of Snyder Cut have been so embracing of me and my music. What an incredible community.
With a song so well-known and covered many times, how did you put your spin on the track? What element of the song do you think showcases your artistry the best?
I didn’t know the song before I covered it for this film, so I wasn’t too intimidated by other people’s versions which was probably a good thing! Because I knew it was going over a scene in a film (I only knew a little about the scene, I didn’t know what film it was for) that helped me focus on how to bring out the colors of the scene, how to help the emotions of that moment come through in the music, it was really about telling that story, and that is what lead me through creating the cover.
I also tried to bring out the longing of the lyrics, the sense of space between two people. That’s what informed me when it came to the sound choices. Because there was so much space for the vocals, I was able to focus on those choices, I think everything comes down to choice as a vocalist, and I tried to think about every moment in that song, about how to use my voice to lead the listeners through this song, take them into the story.
Do you have any fond memories you’d like to share about working with Zack Snyder and Tom Holkenborg for the Justice League soundtrack?
Working with Zack was just the loveliest experience, he is so supportive and warm and human, in an industry where these qualities can get cast aside the higher you get. I cannot sing that man’s praises enough, he is a very rare and special human being. I didn’t get to work with Tom as all the work on the soundtrack was done by the time I got involved, but one lasting memory from the day we recorded the song was the moment I heard the strings with my vocals and piano for the first time, that was a real pinch-me moment, the hugeness of it all really hit me.
If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be? What songs would be must-haves in the soundtrack for a movie based on your life?
Haha, I would be able to move things with my hands and fly! I often dream I have that superpower, so feel like I sort of have it anyway. Oh wow, the soundtrack of my life… well, I probably need ‘Song to the Siren’ now… perhaps also some Glen Miller, La Vie En Rose… Edward Elgar… it would be quite an eclectic soundtrack!
How does it feel to have Bazzi’s ‘Young & Alive,’ a song you worked on, nominated for a GRAMMY? What was your reaction when you found out?
That was all a bit nuts and unexpected but always exciting to get a GRAMMY nomination, of course. My work on the song was at the earlier stage of writing, so I didn’t feel like I could take a huge portion of the success, which is probably why it didn’t sink in for a while, to be honest. It’s great to have work you’re involved with recognized though, that is always very gratifying.
You’re currently working on your new album. What can fans expect from it, and can you give us any hints or teasers?
It is quite a departure from my EP as I’ve been working with Kevin White in LA on it, and his production has elevated the new songs so much, I love where they are now. There is real variety, some more Celtic, folky songs, and some unabashedly pop and bigger songs which are so much fun. Many of these songs I’ve been hiding as I wanted to do them justice. I’m so excited to share them. 🙂 I also brought my friend, who is a poet, in on the project, which brings so much to it!
We absolutely loved getting to chat with Rose Betts about her career thus far and working on the Justice League soundtrack. Are you excited for her debut album coming out later this year? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us @TheHoneyPOP! You can also find us on Facebook and Instagram!
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Featured Image Source: Courtesy of Rose Betts/Design by Bibi Lara & Edited by Emily Defoor for The Honey POP
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Director of Digital + Branding, Lead Photographer of The Honey POP. Lover of Dr Pepper Zero, Christmas lights, and cross-county road trips.